I’ve been in Uruguay for more than a month now, and it’s been the perfect place for me to finish up my next Bailey Weggins mystery, which will be out this fall. For some reason I’ve never understood, it’s easier for me to write when the weather is hot.

My wonderful editor sent her notes about the book to me a few weeks ago, and not only have I incorporated them, but I’ve also been doing a good bit of polishing. Whenever I gain a little distance from a book I’m working on, I notice all sorts of clunky sentences, word reps, and plot points that don’t quite gel.

It’s great to be able to take a fresh look and make a manuscript stronger. The process, however, is really time-consuming. While the sun has been shining and the parrots flying overhead, I’ve been glued to my desk. Have you ever had that experience? Being stuck working while everyone else seems to be playing?

I generally call it quits at about seven in the evening, just as the sun is about to set (above is a shot I took along our beach). That actually gives me time to relish a small part of the day outdoors in this lovely country.

The other night nature had another treat for us besides the owls. After dark, the sea waves began to gleam and sparkle, an amazing silvery blue color and unlike anything we’d ever seen.

We looked online and discovered that though this occurrence is generally rare elsewhere, it’s not uncommon along Uruguayan beaches and is sometimes called sea sparkles. It’s the result of something called bioluminescence, a phenomenon in which certain organisms in the seawater glow in the dark, possibly as protection against predators. It was fantastic, like seeing the aurora borealis underwater!

I considered it my reward for working hard and getting the Bailey book done.

Speaking of that Bailey book, how would you like an early sneak peek, an advance glimpse into the case my irreverent writer sleuth is working to solve next? All you have to do is pre-order my March 21 psychological thriller, THE SECRETS YOU KEEP, in any format and email the receipt to harperperennial@harpercollins.com by March 20, and my publishing house will email you that excerpt.

By the way, this month in my website contest, I’ve giving away a snazzy set of Alexis Bittar earrings valued at $195, a little bling Bailey Weggins would die to own—and I’m sure you’d love to see them dangling from your ears, too. Visit www.KateWhite.com, and enter for a chance to win!

I’ll be back in New York next month and packing my bags for my tour to promote THE SECRETS YOU KEEP. I’d love to meet you while I’m speaking and signing in New York City, Saratoga Springs, Orlando, Tampa, Dallas or Richmond! Check the News section at the bottom of the landing page on www.KateWhite.com for my tour details.